Xbox Head Phil Spencer Talks Xbox E3 Commitment; Believes Event Needs to Change in “Some Ways”

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Dec 4
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Microsoft’s head of Xbox, Phil Spencer, has talked about his commitment to the annual E3 event in Los Angeles.

Sony recently announced that it won’t be attending next year’s E3 event to explore new and familiar ways to engage the community. “PlayStation fans mean the world to us and we always want to innovate, think differently and experiment with new ways to delight gamers”, Sony said. “As a result, we have decided not to participate in E3 in 2019. We are exploring new and familiar ways to engage our community in 2019 and can’t wait to share our plans with you.”

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Following this announcement, Microsoft used the opportunity to confirm its Xbox E3 presence and Spencer teased that there’s a lot to share with fans next year. In a new Extra Life charity livesteam, Spencer has now explained his and Microsoft’s commitment to the annual event (his comments can be found around the 4h;48 mark in the video).

“I’m old enough to remember E3 was about retailers coming and trying to figure out how many cartridges they were gonna buy for the holiday,” Spencer said “And this was back when things would sell out. So, they would go to E3 and they would try to figure out what the hit games were, and we’re all there trying to show our games so they would up their purchase quantities and we’d know how many cartridges to build, discs, whatever it was. Then, all of a sudden, retailers wanted the press there, because they wanted to see what the press was writing about. Because they kinda trusted the press’ instincts, which made sense, on what games are going to be hot. So then E3 went from a retail show to more of a press and retail show.”

The head of Xbox continued, “Now I’d say most of our efforts, and the reason why we like E3 the way we do — because we could do this on our own or direct — we just think it’s an awesome and, frankly, convenient way for the fans to experience video games. I think we do it because it’s a U.S. celebration in L.A. where it’s easier for people in the U.S. to come to one place and just share their love of video games.”

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“I think it’s gotta change in some ways,” he added. “But, I look at all these events like XO, E3, the FanFest that we do at Gamescom … We can reach retailers, we can reach press in so many different ways…”

What are your thoughts about the annual E3 event in general? Does it need change? How do you feel about Sony not attending the event next year? Hit the comments below.

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